Throughout history, womenhave been fighting for their equality (Burkett, 2016).
Finally, most of womencan get educated and can go out and work in workplaces instead of staying athome and taking care of children. However, even though, women get the right tobe educated and work, their efforts have been ignored (Burkett, 2016). Somewomen face a problem in the workplace, just because they are being women(Jeanetta, 2016). The problem that women face in workplace is gender discrimination.Gender discrimination is the idea that men and women are not equal (WorldHealth Organization, 2009). Although, laws and policies about genderdiscrimination in workplaces, such as California’s fair pay Amendment, havebeen developed, it is still an unavoidable issue (Faustman, 2017). As women arepart of the social fabric of today’s society, they are discriminated at work,subject to verbal and physical abuse, and are unheard by the community whichthey live in.Gender discrimination exists in theworkplace.
The most common discrimination in the workplace is the wage gap.Wage gap between men and women is the difference between salary and benefitsgiven to men compared to those given to women for the same amount of work(Allen, 2016). According to the article from CBCnews, women earn 89 cents asmen get one dollar (Solomon, 2017). Additionally, according to a White Housebrief, it is shown that the salary of women is 79% of men’s income (Allen,2016).
California legislated the Fair Pay Amendment to promote wage equality inthe workplace which is a good start and hopefully leads to change. However,there are places in the world where they are not aware of wage discrimination betweenmen and women. Pregnancy discrimination also occurs inworkplace. It affects women’s chance to get hired (Allen, 2016). Women areactually refused to be hired because of pregnancy (Lahle, 2017). Employers are concernedthat hiring pregnant women will result in high expenditures such as medicalcosts, reduced productivity, and employing temporary workers.
According to theCanadian Human Right Act, employers cannot discriminate against pregnant womenin workforce (Ontario Human Rights Commission, 2016). However, employers areagainst the law due to their profit and benefit (Lahle, 2017). Sexual harassment is a serious issue in theworkplace which happen very frequently (World Health Organization, 2017). Sexualharassment is defined as unwelcome sextual behaviors or non-verbal behaviorsthat make a person feel offended and uncomfortable (Ontario Human RightsCommission, 2016). Sharing or showing inappropriate pictures or videos, makingsexual jokes or making sexual comments about clothing or body parts are examplesof sexual harassment (Alison, 2017). According to Statistics Canada, womenself-reported 553,000 sextual assaults in 2014. Moreover, according to OntarioHuman Rights Commission, one out of three working women have experiencedsextual harassment. Facing discrimination, women suffer bothmentally and physically.
Sexual harassments are subject to high blood pressureand obesity (Gender equality, 2015). The researchers found that sexual assaultmay trigger the same type of physiological reactions as stress, which lead to risethe risk of cardiovascular disease (Nicole, 2017). By being stressed, women whoare discriminated against hurt their body by smoking, and overeating whichleads to obesity (Nicole, 2017). Moreover, depression and low self-esteem, post-traumaticstress disorder (PTSD), and social isolation are result of women beingdiscriminated against (Gender equality, 2015). Dr.
Helen Wilson, a licensedclinical psychologist, says that “Among women who experience a sextual assault,90 percent who experience sexual violence in the immediate aftermath exhibitsymptoms of acute stress”. According to US National Library of Medicine NationalInstitutes of Health, sextual harassment can cause long-term depressivesymptoms. These negative health issues have economic consequence like reductionin productivity. Plus, when women leave the job, they should look for the newworker to employ.
As gender discrimination is related close to health problems,it is necessary to concern more about the issue of discrimination and be awareof ways to prevent discrimination in the workplace. Individuals, communities,and media outlets must speak up and raise their voices to prevent further risksof women being discriminated against. Workplaces can increase the risks fromdiscrimination by maintaining inequality in general, but they can also reducethe risks by setting policies, sharing information, promoting skillsdevelopment, and encourage employers and employees to prevent violence.As individual continues to work on settingpolicies, it will help to prevent gender discrimination in the workplace(Jeanetta, 2017).
The first step to prevent discrimination in the workplacewill be promoting gender equality and have respectful relationships between menand women (Jeanetta, 2017). Men should not view women as sexual targets andwomen should not view men as the enemy. If there are rules and policies, peoplewill be forced to follow them. Encouraging workers to review workplace policieswill act as friendly reminders of the equality in the workplace. Anti-harassmentand anti-discrimination policies will be an example of policies (Ontario HumanRights Commission, 2016). When someone experiences discrimination in any way, itis important to speak up. Victims do not need to be ashamed and must reportabout the situation right away to develop an action plan and seek advice frominstitutions about violence prevention and gender equality. Sometimes people discriminate,but they are not aware of the action (Anthony, 2016).
Therefore, companiesshould educate every employee about what are the forms of genderdiscrimination, negative impacts on it, and prevention and strategies to makethe issue better and raise awareness. Participating in this program must bemandatory.If the community opens various programs tosupports equality, there might be improvements with the issue of inequality. Thereare programs and meetings that are open for the women’s rights. One of themeeting available is called “Girl Geek dinner” which is weekly affair a held inLondon (World Health Organization, 2009). In the meeting, women gather to talkabout professions that are usually dominated by men, such as architecture,technology, and construction. This meeting is very helpful as they serve tohelp sharing their experiences and knowledge on how to be successful in thefield. Another program “The gender equality forum” was held in Toronto lastyear 2017 in April (Global Compact Network Canada, 2017).
An action plan wasprovided to improve on gender equality. They also gave participants informationabout how the workplace, the marketplace, and the community are taking actionto advance gender equality (Global Compact Network Canada, 2017). Participantshad time to share their experiences and solution with each other (GlobalCompact Network Canada, 2017). Female leaders such as Elizabeth Dowdeswell(Lieutenant Governor of Ontario), Maryam Monsef (Minister of Status of Wowen), andKathleen Wynne (Premier of Ontario), etc.
, visited to support the event (GlobalCompact Network Canada, 2017). Women entrepreneurs and leaders who haddifficulty with gender discrimination in the workplace and overcame the problemvisited as well (Global Compact Network Canada, 2017). As the community heldmeetings and shared information, there may be more changes and improvements (GlobalCompact Network Canada, 2017). As technology has developed, people haveinstant access to media such as the internet and the television. What peoplesee and read influence their opinion and create bias. Media often shows womenas only beautiful and weak which sets the standard of women’s image (Gevorgyan,2016).
If media changes the image of how women appear, it will help women’simage as a whole. Media can show how serious gender discrimination is throughthe series of programs or campaigns which will create awareness and which willreduce inequality.Gender discrimination in the workplace is aserious issue.
However, it is possible to solve the issue through the effort ofindividuals, communities, and media outlets. Women should not suffer frominequality in the workplace. Moreover, there should be policies to ensureworkplace inequality is taken seriously. Those experiences of the serious issueneed to be heard and their voice cannot be silenced anymore. Finally. Women shouldcome together as community and stand up to the inequality and abuse that they haveendured throughout history.